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In recent years, electrified vehicles have gained renewed interest. However, one of the large hurdles for vehicles with electrical propulsion is the battery capacity and thus the limited driving range. Thus, some kind of range extender has been proposed, i.e. a unit transforming liquid fuel into electricity and/or mechanical energy for extended driving range. Here we present an approach to determine the size and power of a range extender, as well as the methodology of multidisciplinary optimization to optimize the vehicle system attributes, leading to three different hybrid range extender vehicles, which have been built and tested. We conclude that the most beneficial system from a cost/performance point of view as well as the lowest fuel consumption can be found using a mechanical link between the internal combustion engine and the traction wheels.